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Being a Better Ally

Mar 4, 2024

Being a Better Ally

Ella Dame

Uplifting the queer community as a queer person or an ally may seem complex, with the many diversities and nuances existing within the community. But being a support to friends, family, or even strangers within the community can be accomplished and exciting through a lens of understanding that illuminates these complexities in a positive manner. Understanding what it means to be a queer person today, what it means to look for gender affirmation and euphoria, and what it means to be a member of the LGBTQ+ community are all important starting points for being a better ally. This article aims to guide you through allyship and supporting the queer community!


What Does It Mean To Be An Ally?

Three friends dressed in unique, patterned, and colorful clothing take a selfie while outside at a picnic together using a polaroid camera
Image credit: VICE

Being an ally is subjective, it can look as diverse as the queer community itself. Showing up for your queer friends and family is just as important as showing up for any queer community member. Allies that are not a part of the LGBTQ+ have always been a large part of the LGBTQ+ movement itself, utilizing their positions of privilege to uplift queer voices.


Gifts For The Queer People In Your Life

Giving gifts to the queer people in your life can show them that you are there for them not only as a loved one but as an ally. Specifically, gifts that support queer businesses go beyond as an ally, giving a gift to the actual receiver as well as the queer community as a whole. Finding queer businesses can be a local endeavor, checking out brick and mortar queer businesses to further connect to your local queer community. It can also be a wider reaching online journey, looking for resources and ethical sources for the perfect gift. Beyond that, sending a donation to a queer group or non-profit in honor of a queer person in your life can demonstrate solidarity and allyship through action!


Supporting The Queer Community

Three individuals all dressed in darker toned clothes laugh and hold hands while sitting underneath an industrial bridge

Being an ally or a supporter of the queer community can look like donations, volunteer work, and endorsement of queer organizations and non-profits. Some of the below prominent organizations are great places to dedicate your allyship to through measured action!

  1. The Trevor Project, founded in 1998 works to support the queer community and specifically queer youth through their 24/7 crisis hotline, social action, public events, and well-researched resources to help queer youth understand their identity through the lens of mental health.
    Members of the Trevor Project marching in an LGBTQ+ pride march holding a Trevor Project orange banner and holding rainbow ballons that spell out Trevor
    Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

  2. Human Rights Campaign, founded in 1980 utilizes donations to push forward political and social action through organized marches, rallies, communications to political officials, and petitions.
    Two Human Rights Campaign members wearing pride t-shirts and holding up a banner that reads “EQUALITY” at a LGBTQ+ pride march
    Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

  3. GLAAD, founded in 1985 the nonprofit organization has supported the LGBTQ+ community through a variety of crises with their representative media and pushes to change the culture around the queer community. From their annual media awards to news platforms, GLAAD continues to push queer voices to the forefront of news.
    Transgender pride march held by GLAAD with protesters walking together holding up transgender pride flags
    Image credit: Wikimedia Commons


Both& Pay It Forward

Both& Apparel is a brand that designs with the transmasc/nonbinary/queer community in mind, and supporting this community from within remains a top priority. One of the ways we try to be a support to our community is through our pay it forward program. 

Both& Pay It Forward Program, photo of a transmasc person smiling and experiencing gender joy

The program works like this:

  1. You can donate between $10 to $250 through purchasing “Pay It Forward” on our website

  2. We utilize the donations to give back to a list of community members who cannot currently afford the product (Join the list here)

  3. We give back by gifting community members some of our gender affirming clothing pieces for the cost of free!

The pay it forward program was designed with our community members that are not in a position to afford clothing that can bring them gender joy. Donating to the pay it forward program directly supports the queer community by giving a gender affirming clothing experience to a Both& community member and by supporting Both& Apparel, a small but mighty queer-owned business.


How Do You Like To Support The Queer Community?

You can support the queer community in a variety of ways just as diverse as the community itself! If you have a story to share about a time you were a strong ally or saw someone else supporting the queer community in a productive way, we would love to hear about it on the Both& Discord!